Who Was Debbie Wahlberg? The Life and Death of Mark Wahlberg’s Sister

The Wahlbergs are a popular American family and it has everything to do with their exploits in the entertainment industry. Debbie Wahlberg was one of the members of the family who have had nothing to do with showbiz, and Mark Wahlberg is the most accomplished thereof. He is a former rapper and producer but is most known for the many acting roles he has pulled off across the small and big screens, especially the latter. He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and has been nominated for some of the most coveted awards in the business, including two Academy Awards and three Golden Globes.

Given the level he has attained in the entertainment industry, it has been difficult for Mark to keep anything about his personal life private; the media has always pried into it in search for gossip as much as his numerous fans have invaded his privacy in the name of celebrating who he is and what he does. This was never the case with Debbie. In fact, many people didn’t know anything about her until it circulated in September 2003 that the famous actor lost a sister. Since she passed, more people have become curious about her and as you would soon learn, it has something to do with Mark and his daughter Ella Rae Wahlberg.

Profile Summary of Debbie Wahlberg

  • Full Name: Deborah Ellen Donnelly-Wahlberg
  • Place of Birth: Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
  • Date of Birth: July 8, 1960
  • Died On: September 2nd, 2003
  • Father: Donald Edmond Wahlberg Sr.
  • Mother: Alma Elaine (nee Donnelly)
  • Spouse: Edward A. Jackson
  • Children: Donald A. Jackson.

She Was Born on The 8th of July 1960 In Boston, Massachusetts

Fondly called Debbie, her full birth name was Deborah Ellen Wahlberg and she was one of the nine children her parent had. Debbie was born on the 8th of July 1960 in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts. She was almost eleven years older than Mark, the youngest of the nine children: he was born on the 5th of June 1971. Also raised in Boston, Debbie’s parents are Donald Edmond Wahlberg Sr. and Alma Elaine (nee Donnelly). While her mother worked as a nurse’s aide and bank clerk, her father was a U.S. Army veteran who fought in the Korean War and later became a delivery driver to care for his family.

Debbie was raised a catholic and is of Swedish heritage. It is said that she is also of distant French-Canadian and Irish ancestry. More so, she is maternally, distantly related to Nathaniel Hawthorne, a prominent American novelist who lived from the 4th of July 1804 to the 19th of May 1864. Hawthorne is remembered for his dark romantic novels and short stories that border around religion, morality, and history.

Debbie’s parents had issues in their marriage and ultimately settled for divorce; this was in 1982 when she was about 22 years old.

Debbie Wahlberg Came From a Huge Family That Comprises Eight Full-Siblings and Three Half-Siblings

The late sister of the famous actor hailed from a huge family and had a total of eleven siblings. Before her father got married to her mother, he had another relationship that saw the birth of three children named Donna Wahlberg, Scott Wahlberg, and Buddy Wahlberg. Of the three step-siblings, only Donna and Scott are still alive; Buddy reportedly died years ago; the cause of his death isn’t known to the public.

As stated earlier, Debbie is one of the nine children her parents had together. Apart from Mark who is the youngest of the nine, she had additional five brothers named Arthur Wahlberg, Jim Wahlberg, Robert Wahlberg, Paul Wahlberg, and Donnie Wahlberg. Debbie also had two sisters named Michelle Wahlberg and Tracey Wahlberg. Apart from the family she hailed from, Debbie built a family of her own with a fellow named Edward A. Jackson. Together, they had at least a son named Donald A. Jackson.

Debbie Wahlberg

She Died In September 2003 Following a Heart Attack She Suffered During a Medical Procedure

As death is inevitable, it is something one should anticipate but we are often caught up with living that death comes calling unexpectedly and painfully so. Debbie’s death wasn’t something the Wahlberg family anticipated. It was a painful event for them as Debbie was only 43 years old when she died.

From what we gathered, Debbie Wahlberg was being treated for kidney stones when she succumbed to death. It is said that she suffered a sudden heart attack and septic shock during a medical procedure and it inadvertently claimed her life.

The death of a child is one of the most painful things for any parent to endure and it was particularly so for Debbie’s mother, Alma. Debbie’s brother Donnie related that her death totally devasted Alma. According to him, the woman felt “lost” and “crushed” when she lost her first daughter.

Here’s Why Mark Regards Debbie as His Daughter’s Guardian Angel

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Mark Wahlberg echoed Donnie’s sentiments as he related that Alma “went into a big, deep depression” after Debbie passed away. Debbie died on the 2nd of September 2003, roughly five years before her father Donald Edmond Wahlberg Sr. who died sometime in 2008. Her mother has also passed on, this was in April 2021 at the age of 78.

It’s approaching two decades since Debbie Wahlberg passed on but her death has stuck with her youngest brother, Mark Wahlberg, and this is all because of his first child and daughter, Ella Rae. It is no secret that the Hollywood star has been married to Rhea Durham for many years. The actor got married to the model on the 1st of August 2009 and they are now parents to four children: two daughters (Ella Rae and Grace Margaret) and two sons named Michael and Brendan Joseph.

Their first, Ella Rae is 18 years old; she was born on the 2nd of September 2003, the same day Mark Wahlberg lost his sister Debbie. As such every year Mark celebrates the birth anniversary of his first child, he is also compelled to honor the memory of his late sister whom he regards as the guardian angel of Ella.

Chinedu Ndubueze
Chinedu holds a B.SC in Mass Communications with several years of writing and editing experience. He is an advocate of closed-back headphones, horror movies, and dark humor; He believes that Peter Griffin and Stan Smith should be real people. Outside of having to write, edit, and work on other forms of content, Chinedu may keep up with the EPL or listen to everything Eminem and Jon Bellion.
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